No joy from the NHS

Phil Hammond's article ("Tidings and joy? Not at the NHS", 25 December) was received a little late in the year locally. Throughout August and September 2000, the NHS urology ward I worked on was cancelling agency shifts, leaving the ward so chronically understaffed that the "bedblocking" dementia patients (over a quarter of the ward) were frequently left to lie in their own faeces/urine until late afternoon.

I resigned and officially complained in writing (repeatedly). Three months later, I have not received one acknowledgement. The local and national ombudsmen for health have been "unable to help". But I have been banned by my local NHS hospital trust from entering any of its premises.

Paul Farmer
Reading, Berks